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Life on a mud farm

Erica Louder for Progressive Forage Published on 07 March 2019
muddy farm yard

If someone were to ask what kind of farm I live on, after maybe a moment’s hesitation, I would have to answer a mud farm. I live on a mud farm.

Like many farms, rain plays a big part in the success of our mud crop. It really does all the hard work; one good soaking results in deep, sticky mud, pretty much farm-wide. The sun plays a part too. In our climate, February and March are the best months for growing mud. The sun makes its grand entrance for the year and it melts months of accumulated snow, helping our mud thrive. Fortunately, during the spring, the sun never gets too hot or stays too long – it would be a pity to dry up all that good mud.

Truthfully, mud is probably the best crop we grow. It is definitely the best yielding, if the least profitable. Last week, our mud even broke its own record. The tractor got stuck no less than four times in a single week. I am sure it only happened three times the previous week. To add to the tally, it even captured the semitruck who, ironically enough, was delivering a load of gravel. It was a full-fledged spectator sport, watching that truck get dragged out. It took up most of the afternoon and all of the truck driver’s patience. Despite the need, it may be a while before we get another load.

You know, some farm wives complain about silage in the dryer vents, knives in blue-jean pockets and dirt on carpet floors, but not me. I just try to look on the bright side of everything, even our mud crop. Yesterday, my 3-year-old submitted to a bath without complaint because of the mud. She lost both boots and a jacket in that mud. I have child-sized mud prints from the back door to the bathroom. I can’t quite get myself to clean them up; they are almost sweet. Almost.

I probably don’t need to worry about tilling my garden plot this year either. I should just sprinkle some seeds in the mudroom; I guess it is aptly named. And think of all the money I am saving by skipping the car wash; there really isn’t a point to a car wash during mud season. Then there are the boots and the jackets and the coveralls. Yep, all covered in mud. No reason to run the washer for them. We will just spray off the dried mud come summertime. It will give us the chance to look back pleasantly on the 2019 mud season.

There really is nothing like life on a mud farm.  end mark

Erica Louder is a freelance writer based in Idaho. Email Erica Louder.

PHOTO: Our mud farm – a little piece of heaven. Photo by Erica Louder.